Can We Classify Our Personalities? The MBTI and the 16 Personalities?
by Kaan ERTAN
The Myers–Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is simply an introspective character test. The test is easy and can be done online in just 15 minutes. Its result is one of 16 different character categories, indicating differing psychological preferences about how people perceive the world or make decisions. Although these character categories cannot tell you all about you and your psychology, it usually is very accurate at knowing people’s psychology and decision-making mechanisms. Some people who do research in this area write articles and make podcasts about these character types, and in some deep analysis, they give advice to the people of a certain character type according to their type.
Although some people take this test seriously and trust it, there are many critics who suggest that even though MBTI resembles some psychological theories, it is more of pseudoscience. Since most of the academic authorities are critics of this test, we can say that it is not widely endorsed in the field. But this does not mean that we cannot benefit from the test. Even if it is not scientifically accurate, it greatly helps you to have a deeper insight both for yourself and for the others around you.
Now, I wish to talk more about the test itself. The test evaluates you in four categories. From each category, your result turns out to favor one side over the other. The more you favor one side, the sharper your personality is affected by that trait. The four categories are:
Mind (How you are energized): Introversion(I) or Extraversion(E)
Energy (How you gather and process information): Sensing(S) or Intuition(N)
Nature (How you make decisions and cope with emotions): Thinking(T) or Feeling(F)
Tactics (How you approach to decision-making, work, life): Judging(J) or Perceiving(P).
The letter which turns out to be stronger/more preferred is taken from each category to produce a four-letter test result, like "ENFP", “INTJ” or "ISFJ". This becomes your main MBTI type. Additionally, one more letter for the Identity category is added to your code. In this category, Assertive (-A) individuals are self-assured, even-tempered, and resistant to stress whereas their counterpart Turbulent (-T) individuals are self-conscious and sensitive to stress. To finalize your personality type, the letter -T for Turbulent or -A for Assertive is added to your code such as “ENFP-T”, “INTJ-A”, or “ISFJ-T”. But bear in mind that the last letter does not change your group from the 16 personality types.
According to their tendencies, types are divided into 4 subgroups:
Analysts (types with N and T): These types embrace rationality and impartiality, excelling in intellectual debates and scientific fields. They are fiercely independent, open-minded, strong-willed, and imaginative, approaching many things from a utilitarian perspective. These traits make Analysts excellent thinkers but also cause difficulties in social pursuits.
Diplomats (types with N and F): Diplomats focus on empathy and cooperation, excelling in diplomacy and counseling. People of type group are cooperative and imaginative, often playing the role of harmonizers. But they face some issues when there is a need to rely exclusively on rationality or a need to make difficult decisions.
Sentinels (types with S and J): Sentinels are cooperative and highly practical; creating order, security, and stability wherever they are. People of these types tend to be hardworking and traditional, and excel in logistical or administrative fields. These personality types stick to their plans; however, they can also be very inflexible and reluctant to accept different points of view.
Explorers (types with S and P): These types are the most spontaneous of all and have the ability to connect with their surroundings in a way that is beyond all others. Explorers are utilitarian and practical, shining in situations that require quick reaction. They are masters of tools and techniques. Unsurprisingly, these personality types are irreplaceable in crises, crafts, and sales; however, their traits can also push them towards undertaking risky endeavors or focusing solely on sensualness.
Knowing your personality type and subgroup can unlock a world of self-exploration for you. As I stated before, even if you do not possess a strong inclination towards your type or if you simply do not agree with all the characteristics, you can still use all the work in this field as a reference for yourself. Evaluating yourself and your social circle with the help of this test can prove very beneficial. It may help you understand why you do or feel certain things or why others behave in a certain way. At the end of this article, you will find some useful links for the test and related further readings. I urge you to take a look at them and find out your own personality type. Right below you can see a very undetailed chart for some simple characteristics of each type.
A Graph Showing the Basic Outlines of All the Main Type Letters
A Very Brief Chart for Introduction to the 16 Personality Types
Finally, I want to remind you that no person is the same as another one. We are all unique people with unique backgrounds and social circles. This test yields a rough classification for people’s characters, but it is merely a classification. So if you find out that a large proportion of the people on Earth share the same personality type as you, please do not feel yourself normal; and if your type is rare, please do not feel lonely. Everyone is different, yet we are all the same. (1) (2) (3)
MBTI Test (please take the English version and be honest in your answers)
The MBTI Types of Real/Fictional People and Characters (not a scientific study but a fan-site)